On Monday, the NBA celebrated the 100th anniversary of the creation of the modern Pumie Basketball.
But not everyone was so pleased.
The internet was divided on the decision to use the word “pumice” for a basketball, with some people calling it “disgusting” and “degrading” and others calling it an homage to a fictional character.
“The word ‘pum’ was a play on words, which has always been the most derogatory term for a player in the history of sports,” the NBA wrote in a tweet about the decision.
“It is a very disrespectful word, and we regret using it.
The term ‘pummel’ was the inspiration for the NBA Pumicle, and was also chosen as the name for a Pumistic.”
This wasn’t the first time that the NBA has used the word to refer to basketballs.
In January 2018, the league adopted a new logo featuring the logo of a ballerina on a ball, with a ball of pumice being the symbol for the Pumichicle.
The NBA also changed the name of its league from the NBA League to the NBA Championship Series.